A Model of Interstellar Communities with Parameters Governing their Behavior with Dr. Kevin Knuth
Abstract: Given what is now known about the populations of planets, and the generation, prevalence and distribution of complex organic molecules in space, it is now generally believed that it is unlikely that our civilization is alone in this galaxy. This idea is central to the concept of the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI), which has focused mainly on searching for radio signals originating from extraterrestrial communications, since it has been imagined that extraterrestrial craft visiting Earth would be an extremely unlikely event. However, the fact that we have now observed two natural interstellar objects, asteroid 1I/2017 U1 ('Oumuamua) and comet C/2019 Q4 (2I/Borisov), passing through our solar system and that we ourselves are now working toward sending probes to the Alpha Centauri system by 2069, a century after the first Moon landings, suggests that other civilizations may make similar efforts. Therefore, it is reasonable to consider what one can infer about an interstellar civilization that may have visited Earth.
To establish prior probabilities for the general characteristics and capabilities of an interstellar civilization that has visited Earth, the travels of thousands of civilizations capable of interstellar travel are modeled and simulated. From the subset of those simulated interstellar civilizations that discover and visit Earth the distribution of their characteristics, such as the lifetime of the civilization, the distance of their civilized worlds from Earth, the number of star systems in their domain, and their basic ability to perform interstellar travel can be estimated. In addition to establishing realistic expectations about extraterrestrial visitors, these results also serve to inform about what characteristics and capabilities are required to create and maintain an interstellar presence.
Bio: Prof. Kevin Knuth is an Associate Professor in the Department of Physics at the University at Albany (SUNY), and is the Editor-in-Chief of the journal Entropy (MDPI). He is a former NASA research scientist having worked for four years at NASA Ames Research Center in the Intelligent Systems Division designing artificial intelligence algorithms for astrophysical data analysis. He has over 20 years of experience in applying Bayesian and maximum entropy methods to the design of machine learning algorithms for data analysis applied to the physical sciences. His current research interests include the foundations of physics, quantum information, inference and inquiry, autonomous robotics, and the search for and characterization of extrasolar planets. He has published over 90 peer-reviewed publications and has been invited to give over 80 presentations in 14 countries. Click here to find out more about Kevin: http://knuthlab.rit.albany.edu/
LIVE July 23, 2020 at 6:00 PM EST
LIVE October 21, 2020 at 6:00 PM EST
Title: “Time Travel, Hominin Evolution, and the UFO Phenomenon” by Dr. Michael P. Masters
Abstract: This talk cautiously examines the premise that ‘UFOs’ and ‘aliens’ may be our distant human descendants, returning from the future to study their own ancestral past. The suite of unique attributes characterizing the last 6 million years of hominin evolution on this planet are also ubiquitously described in credible reports of close encounters with ‘alien’ entities. Furthermore, the culture and technology of these bipedal humanoid beings, while clearly more advanced than our own, show signs of having been built upon the knowledge and tools that modern humans have developed throughout our own cultural past. This presentation seeks to demonstrate how the persistence of these same biological and cultural trends in hominin evolution, if continued into the future, may ultimately result in us becoming the ones piloting these disc-shaped craft, which are likely the very devices that allow our future progeny to venture backward across the landscape of time.
Bio: Dr. Michael P. Masters is a professor of biological anthropology at Montana Tech in Butte, Montana. He received a Ph.D. in Anthropology from The Ohio State University in 2009, where he specialized in human evolutionary anatomy, archaeology, and biomedicine. Dr. Masters spent the following decade developing a broad academic background that unites the fields of anthropology, astronomy, astrobiology and physics, to examine the premise that UFOs and Aliens are simply our distant human descendants, returning from the future to study us in their own hominin evolutionary past. His new book, Identified Flying Objects: A Multidisciplinary Scientific Approach to the UFO Phenomenon, challenges readers to consider new possibilities while cultivating conversations about our ever-evolving understanding of time and time travel.
AAPC Live Streamed May 27, 2020 3pm Pacific.
Abstract: Nearly 25% of the universe is composed of a mysterious substance known as dark matter (while 70% of the cosmos is something called “dark energy”) making it the height of hubris to think that we know all there is to know about physics and astronomy today. This talk will review the strong evidence behind the existence of dark matter, such as gravitational lensing, then discuss how it might lead to naturally occurring anomalies not involving craft piloted by intelligent beings at all. Next, I will cover the possibility for its use as fuel for interstellar flight, one that can be gathered in transit, given its natural abundance being 5x that of interstellar hydrogen. I will also mention the various different possibilities for what dark matter actually is, and current attempts to “harness” it, or at least identify it, here on Earth, in deep-underground direct detection experiments. Time permitting, I will venture into a discussion of dark energy, unrelated to dark matter except for the adjective dark meaning unknown, and how craft, terrestrial or otherwise, might also be able to tap into this as the real-life “zero-point vacuum energy.”
Bio: Dr. Matthew Szydagis received his B.A., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Chicago, then worked as a postdoctoral scholar at the University of California Davis. He is now an Assistant Professor at the University at Albany SUNY studying experimental particle astrophysics, in particular direct detection of dark matter, as well as general detector development for rare event searches. He was inspired by Star Trek: The Next Generation as a child to become a scientist, and has always been fascinated by the UAP phenomenon, treating it seriously his entire life.
Direct Link to the streamed presentation:
What is the Possible Connection between UAPs and Dark Matter?
by Dr. Matthew Szydagis
May 6, 2020 at 3 pm Pacific/6 pm Eastern
Analysis of the "Ubatuba" material by Robert Powell.
Robert Powell reviews recent testing he and his team completed on a 99.88% pure magnesium sample first obtained in the Ubatuba region of Brazil in 1957. Powell will reviewed the history of the sample, previous chemical testing, isotopic analysis of the magnesium as well as isotopic analysis of impurities in the sample that were in 100ppm levels, namely strontium, barium, zinc, and copper. Lastly he will discuss the meaning of the results that he obtained.
Direct link to the streamed presentation:
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